Review by abigailray1013 -- Elastic Girl by Olivia Rana

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Abigail R
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Review by abigailray1013 -- Elastic Girl by Olivia Rana

Post by Abigail R »

[Following is a volunteer review of "Elastic Girl" by Olivia Rana.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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Born in India, Muthu Tikaram was believed to be “cursed” by her family for not being born a boy. She grew up to believe that she was the cause of the many sufferings her family endured. She was pushed away and hated by her grandmother and did not receive an education like her two older sisters, Safa and Belli, who were doted on. While her sisters were in school, Muthu sold Roti with her friend Maheesh. The two friends spent their time pretending to be like the stars of Bollywood, hoping for this to become reality one day.

After a near death experience, it is discovered that Muthu has a rare talent of being able to squeeze herself into tight places. This earns her the nickname of “Elastic Girl”. Soon after her home is destroyed and her family is left with nothing, Muthu is sold to the circus by her father who hopes to profit on this newly found gift.

Muthu’s excitement for this new adventure quickly fades as she realizes some of the harsh realities of the circus. She experiences immense hardships, death, and rejection. All the while, believing that her grandmother was right, she is the cause of all the evil and suffering that surrounds her.

Elastic Girl by Olivia Rana is the story of a brave young girl who preservers through every hardship. From the slums of India to the circus, Muthu continues to gain strength. Through out her story, she begins to realize that maybe she is not the cause of bad things after all. That she is worthy of love and a good life. Along with her, readers will feel every heartbreak and torment Muthu endures and rejoice in every triumph!

“My mind had been stretched and tormented, but like elastic it had snapped back into place, and filled with new energy and determination…” Pg. 230, Elastic Girl

Olivia Rana did a wonderful job creating a culturally rich story. Readers get a picture of what it is like for families in poverty, as well as cultural food, clothing, and religion. This book gives an opportunity to learn new customs and be transported to a different country. I found that researching different Indian words, places, or religious customs gave an even greater cultural depth to the story. It is worth it to take some time to read about the cultural references that may be unfamiliar. Rana also brings light to the reality of sexual abuse and sex trafficking and she effectively tackled a difficult subject.

I would give Elastic Girl 4 out of 4 stars. It is well written and edited. Rana writes with beautiful descriptions that never fail to evoke deep emotions. It is a culturally rich story with much to learn about endurance and continuing through life despite consistent heartbreak.

I would recommend this story to those who like underdog story lines and would enjoy the bravery of a young girl born into hardship. I’d also recommend it to those who enjoy rich cultures, as there is much to learn from the book. My favorite part of Elastic Girl was the way Muthu shows that the worst we see in ourselves is not always what is true. Though life will always be full of hardships, we are not defined by them! What a powerful lesson of inner strength Muthu gives!

I would not recommend to those who would dislike names, places, and cultural references that they may not recognize. I would also caution those that are sensitive to sexual abuse and trafficking as this is plays a major part in Muthu’s story.

I would absolutely read this book again and would recommend it to others. Thank you, Olivia Rana for writing such a beautiful and emotional story!

******
Elastic Girl
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Deeksha K Murthy
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Latest Review: Elastic Girl by Olivia Rana

Post by Deeksha K Murthy »

Thank you for the wonderful review, you highlighted the key points in the story giving the readers the gist of what the book is all about. the story was very captivating and the cultural references also play a key role in this novel. overall, this is a wonderful book which highlights the struggles in the society and you, as a reviewer did justice to this book. good luck!
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Abigail R
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Post by Abigail R »

Deeksha K Murthy wrote: 26 Jul 2018, 11:37 Thank you for the wonderful review, you highlighted the key points in the story giving the readers the gist of what the book is all about. the story was very captivating and the cultural references also play a key role in this novel. overall, this is a wonderful book which highlights the struggles in the society and you, as a reviewer did justice to this book. good luck!
Thank you for replying to my review! This book was such a wonderful read and I was so thrilled to write about it. I am glad to see that you also enjoyed the book, even with the strange ending that occurred.
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Post by Bianka Walter »

I love it when the author pushes me to do some research for myself, as you mentioned. When reading about new cultures and countries, it is one of my favourite things to look up more about what is being described in the book. Kudos to the author for evoking those desires to learn more. Also, for tackling the hard topics with grace.

This was a great review! Thanks so much :)
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Abigail R
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Post by Abigail R »

Bianka Walter wrote: 27 Jul 2018, 16:43 I love it when the author pushes me to do some research for myself, as you mentioned. When reading about new cultures and countries, it is one of my favourite things to look up more about what is being described in the book. Kudos to the author for evoking those desires to learn more. Also, for tackling the hard topics with grace.

This was a great review! Thanks so much :)
Olivia Rana most definitely did a wonderful job providing a rich culture within the story while still leaving room for the reader to research and learn more on their own!
Thank you for your kind reply! And congratulations on being member of the month! :)
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Post by Fuzaila »

Amazing review Abigail! Muthu's story from hardships to strength, with the culturally rich background of Indian traditions, would undoubtedly make a very good story. I would definitely love to read this book as it is also set in my country. I'm glad the author put effort to research our culture, language and traditions. It Thank you for your review.
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Post by OloladeO »

Great review! Nobody should have to go through what Muthu went through. It's pretty sad that even in recent times people carry such belief's. Thanks for the review.
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Abigail R
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Post by Abigail R »

Fuzaila wrote: 30 Jul 2018, 10:18 Amazing review Abigail! Muthu's story from hardships to strength, with the culturally rich background of Indian traditions, would undoubtedly make a very good story. I would definitely love to read this book as it is also set in my country. I'm glad the author put effort to research our culture, language and traditions. It Thank you for your review.
Thank you so much for your kind comment. If you end up reading this story, please let me know what you think! I'd love to hear from someone who is from this country and knows the culture so closely. I loved this story and I loved getting to see a piece of a culture so different from mine. I would be interested in your thoughts.
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Abigail R
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Post by Abigail R »

christabel88 wrote: 30 Jul 2018, 10:47 Great review! Nobody should have to go through what Muthu went through. It's pretty sad that even in recent times people carry such belief's. Thanks for the review.
Thanks so much! Muthu went through a lot but she was an inspiration to me through her resilence!
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Post by Fuzaila »

abigailray1013 wrote: 31 Jul 2018, 11:02
Fuzaila wrote: 30 Jul 2018, 10:18 Amazing review Abigail! Muthu's story from hardships to strength, with the culturally rich background of Indian traditions, would undoubtedly make a very good story. I would definitely love to read this book as it is also set in my country. I'm glad the author put effort to research our culture, language and traditions. It Thank you for your review.
Thank you so much for your kind comment. If you end up reading this story, please let me know what you think! I'd love to hear from someone who is from this country and knows the culture so closely. I loved this story and I loved getting to see a piece of a culture so different from mine. I would be interested in your thoughts.
My pleasure. Sure! I've added this book to my tbr list and would very much like an opportunity to review it. I always love to hear the opinions of #ownvoices readers who see themselves represented in the books they read. Thank you for your interest. :tiphat:
"Create your own identity. Let it be unique for yourself yet identifiable for others." :tiphat:
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Post by Rosemary Khathibe »

As I read your review, I feel a glimpse of sympathy for Muthu already for enduring hardship despite having a family. Not even one of them cared for her wellbeing? I can't wait to find out. Thanks for your enchanting review.
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Abigail R
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Post by Abigail R »

Rosemary Khathibe wrote: 31 Jul 2018, 12:32 As I read your review, I feel a glimpse of sympathy for Muthu already for enduring hardship despite having a family. Not even one of them cared for her wellbeing? I can't wait to find out. Thanks for your enchanting review.
It felt at many times like not even one of them cared for her! There are, as always, some shocking twists that you'll just have to read for yourself :wink2:
Let me know what you think if you end up reading this great story!!
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Post by Cotwani »

Sounds like an enjoyable read. Great review!
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Post by Julie Green »

Your lovely review brings the story to life in a few short paragraphs. I shall certainly consider reading this book now..
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Post by Samuel Waragu »

This book gives an opportunity to learn new customs and be transported to a different country
Wah! It is a great book for real. As a person who loves the challenge of new customs, I think I have to read this book as well. Thanks for this review.
“If things start happening, don't worry, don't stew, just go right along and you'll start happening too.”~Dr. Theodor Seuss Geisel (1904-1991)
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